- Family and friends arrived at the Fisherman's Pier for Claire and Ryan's wedding.
- Tim told Claire that, while he would always love her, he was ready to let her go. Their peaceful moment was interrupted by a pair of gunmen who dragged them to the basement, where the rest of their guests were also being held.
- There was only one person not in the basement: Ryan. Tim insisted that Ryan's absence meant he had finally snapped and trapped them all there.
- Ryan was brought into the basement, beaten and definitely not in charge. The armed guards forced him to confess to having killed Nick. With the truth out, a man in a wheelchair entered the basement it was Nick Moriani.
THE FISHERMAN'S PIER, BASEMENT
Eye contact. That is all he wants.
But none of them will look Ryan Moriani in the eye. Not his mother, not his siblings, not the woman he was supposed to marry today. Having her feet away from him, in the dress that was supposed to mark the beginning of their life together, is like an added, agonizing twist of the knife.
"You didn't think I would miss your big day, did you, Ryan?"
The voice is weak, heavy with the weight of whatever Nick has been through, but still as nasty as ever.
Ryan has no idea how to begin responding. Nick can't be here. He's dead. The gunshot has haunted Ryan for months--his finger yanking hard on the trigger, knowing immediately that he had condemned himself to a life of torture and secrecy. Still, it was better than the alternative. He couldn't allow Nick to hurt the Fishers, or Claire, or Travis and Samantha.
"This was all a hoax? A joke?" Claire asks Ryan, though it is more a condemnation than a question.
"No, I swear--I had no idea." Ryan struggles for words, any words. "I thought he was "
"Dead?" Nick chimes in. A hollow little laugh rattles his weakened frame, and his hands clutch the arms of the wheelchair. His body looks so old and broken that Ryan can hardly believe the man is sitting here in front of them.
"Ryan is telling the truth. For once," Nick croaks. "He shot me in cold blood. I'm sure he'll tell you he only did it for the most honorable of reasons, but we all know that he had been dying to do it for years. Isn't that correct?"
Ryan bites his tongue.
"Not that it will make much difference in a short while," Nick says. He reaches into his coat and pulls out a device that bears a strong resemblance to a remote control.
"What is that?" Brent demands. His words sound uneven, a result of the concussion he suffered earlier, but his anger and panic come through loud and clear.
"This " Nick holds up the device. " is a new little toy of mine. Something that will clear up this mess once and for all."
"This is insane!" Brent says, as if that argument will do anything to sway Nick.
"I realize that the King's Bay PD is not the most perceptive group, but I don't have much time left, thanks to my dear son." Nick fiddles with the buttons on the device.
"I hope you rot in hell!" Katherine calls out.
Nick shrugs. "I wouldn't be surprised. But I will use my last ounce of strength to ensure that each and every one of you is right there beside me."
Ryan catches sight of Courtney, looking at Jason with terror in her eyes. There are people here--Courtney, the children, Brian--who have nothing whatsoever to do with Nick or Ryan or this situation, but Nick is so far gone that a few more bodies do not concern him in the least.
"You have to stop this," Ryan says through gritted teeth. "Do whatever you want with me. The rest of them--let them go."
Nick simply laughs and continues toying with the button, but he fixes his gaze on Ryan's. Eye contact, steady and unflinching. But all Ryan can do now is look away.
THE FISHERMAN'S PIER, BASEMENT
None of this seems real to Sarah. Not Nick Moriani sitting in front of them, not Ryan confessing to having shot him, and certainly not the remote control in Nick's hands that has the power to blow them all to bits.
She realizes that she is already searching for a way out. That back door continues to tug at her attention. If only she could make a break for it
As before, she catches Brent looking at it, too. They are on the same wavelength: reasoning with a madman is useless. There has to be a way to get everyone out of here.
"Where is it?" she calls out. She tries to sound as confident as possible, though she fears that she comes off more like a woman terrified of well, of being blown up.
The outburst draws Nick's attention to her. And the guards', too.
"The bomb," she says, trying to ignore the stony, intimidating looks. "Where is it?"
Nick smiles condescendingly at her. "That's hardly something that you need to know. Rest assured that it will do its job, and that is all that matters."
With nothing else to say and her brain working in overdrive, Sarah falls quiet. She feels Tori pressed against her leg, holding on for dear life.
"We're going to get out of here," Sarah whispers to her daughter.
Tori's eyes are wide with terror. "How?"
Like a magnet, that back door draws Sarah back to it. "We'll find a way," she says.
As she tries not to dwell on the door, for fear of drawing more attention to it and having it blocked, she sees Matt watching her. His expression is stern, and the message is clear: Don't do this. Don't put yourself or the baby in any more danger than you're already in.
Matt draws her to him, and one hand rests on her ever-growing stomach. She understands why he feels the way he does. But if she doesn't do something soon, they will not even have the luxury of worrying anymore.
THE FISHERMAN'S PIER, BASEMENT
The silence is overwhelming. It feels much more threatening than Nick's presence, even more threatening than the guns being held mere feet away from them. Ryan feels a desperate urge to lay out the facts, to make them all believe that he only did what he did for their own good, but he cannot find the words to do it.
One of the twins cries out. Maybe he can sense what is going on. Maybe he is just tired or hungry or bored. But the child's cry suddenly makes the whole thing seem much more real to Ryan. He lunges at Nick, and his hands curve around the frail neck.
"How did you do this? Answer me, you bastard!"
A rough hand jerks Ryan backward. A moment later, his arms are being pressed behind his back, and the butt of a gun is positioned against his temple.
"I took advantage of the situation," Nick says. "Certainly not the situation I'd liked to have landed in, but I've never been one to miss a golden opportunity."
"For what? Sending me to prison?" Tim calls out. It is the first thing he has said since Nick entered the basement, and the words are tinged with an odd combination of relief and terror.
"I'm afraid you have to thank your dear brother for that," Nick says, nodding his head in Ryan's direction. "He is the one who didn't see fit to take credit for what he had done."
Something about this doesn't add up. Nick didn't know that Ryan would shoot him that night. He was most definitely in a coma for weeks afterward. How could he have manipulated the situation so deftly?
"What about Lola?" Ryan asks. He knows that he had nothing to do with the maid's death, and Tim had no reason to shoot her, either.
Nick folds his hands in his lap. "That was a test. Tim being accused of shooting me wasn't enough to draw the truth out of you."
"So you killed an innocent woman and framed for me for it?" Tim asks in disbelief.
"Not me personally." Nick seems entirely too pleased with himself, although Ryan supposes that makes sense, considering that his father seems to have taken a sharp drop off the cliff of sanity.
"You were in a coma. In bad shape," Claire says. "How could you have organized all this?"
"I have people. That's really enough of this Q&A session, don't you all agree?" Nick shifts in the wheelchair, once again refocusing on Ryan. "My dear son. You've proven exactly what kind of man you are, haven't you? Willing to throw over your so-called family for a woman."
Ryan is frozen. That isn't what he meant to do--he wanted to protect them--keep Nick from hurting them. He never wanted Tim to go to prison for it. He figured there must be some way they could get him acquitted
He catches Claire staring at him, disdainful, disgusted. All that work, all that secrecy, all that self-torture, all for nothing.
Part of him wishes that Nick would let the rest of them go and just blow him up.
But Nick has further
business to attend to, as he scans the group of captives. He settles on Katherine
and speaks slowly, as if he has rehearsed this.
"My loving wife From what I'm told, you visited me that night with every intention of doing exactly what Ryan did--only he had gotten to me first."
Katherine holds her head high. "I should have done it again, for good measure."
That gets a bitter little laugh out of Nick.
"It really is a shame," he says, "that things didn't work out for us. In some ways, you were my perfect match."
Before Katherine can refute that claim, Nick rotates again. This time, he zeroes in on Camille.
"And you," he says, focused on her like a tractor beam. "I didn't expect that you would be here, but what a pleasant surprise. This really is a fitting end to our story, wouldn't you say?"
Camille keeps her arms folded and her mouth shut tightly. Molly rubs her shoulder, trying her best to be reassuring, but Ryan can see the fear in all of them. All because of him.
"Oh, and Ryan's beloved mother," Nick continues, turning to Paula. "How does it feel to learn that the son you turned your life inside-out for is nothing more than a common criminal after all?"
"You raised him this way. You did this to him!" Paula accuses. The strength behind her words surprises Ryan and fills him with a new hope. Maybe there is something to salvage here. Maybe--
"Now you know how it feels to have your child ripped away from you," Nick says. "To find out that he is not the person you hoped he would be, and never will be."
Ryan cannot bring himself to look at Paula. Out of the corner of his eye, he sees her turn to Bill, and the two of them huddle together. Ryan feels like a voyeur watching them, like someone strange and unwelcome.
It can't be over. There must be a way to convince them that this wasn't malicious. He never meant for Tim or for any of them to be hurt. All he wanted was to have the family that he never had--
A sudden roar fills the air. In a flash of movement, two bodies charge at Nick. Ryan realizes that they are Brent and Jason.
THE FISHERMAN'S PIER, BASEMENT
Sarah watches the melee carefully. Brent tackles the wheelchair, while Jason scrambles to grab the control from Nick's weak hands. This is her chance.
She pulls away from Matt and from Tori.
Matt grabs her shoulder and pulls her back. He looks her straight in the eye: Stay out of it.
She wriggles out of his grip and keeps moving.
"Sarah!" he calls, but she is already on her way.
The guards are all over Brent and Jason. Beating them, kicking them. The two men are curled up on the floor, taking the punishment. Cries and gasps go up from the rest of the hostages. Sarah sees the action in passing, but she cannot slow down.
"Hey!" one of the guards' gruff voices calls out. "Hold it!"
She doesn't turn back. Doesn't even pause. She picks up her pace as best she can and hits the back door with all the force she can muster.
She presses the bar. Nothing.
The door won't open.
She looks back just long enough to see a gun aimed at her.
"Stop!" the guard yells.
She pushes on the bar again. This time it gives. The door cracks open.
A gunshot rings out.
END OF EPISODE #447
has been shot?
Will the captives make it out alive?
Is life as he knows it over for Ryan?
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